Today iD reached a new level of stability with an alpha1 release.

Since releasing iD alpha0 in late December, we’ve made over 500 commits to the project, including a redesign, many bugfixes, usability improvements, and features.

John, Ansis, Saman, and I have started to use iD on the production OSM system with real data, and started our first real new-user testing at the OpenStreetMap editathon at MapBox. We’re confident that iD is reliable enough for real use, so you can now switch to editing instead of by clicking the dev button in the bottom-right of the interface.


Ansis wrote a sophisticated labeling system in iD, which makes it easier to identify unnamed and misnamed features and quickly orient yourself in new areas. It uses a fast RTree implementation and takes inspiration from Kothic.js and other javascript-based renderers.


We’re still pushing hard on performance - we improved the way that iD stores, updates, and searches its database, which is implemented as a persistent data structure. Navigating the map is also faster thanks to increased usage of CSS transforms.

Multipolyons and Relations

John wrote a vastly improved system for relations and multipolygons in iD, which means that multipolygon relations are now displayed and edited correctly. This was one of the largest final issues towards iD editing real map data, especially data in cities with complex buildings and atriums.

Try it Out

We need testers and input now more than ever. The testing instance is now fixed to the alpha1 release, so try it out! Click ‘dev’ in the bottom-right to switch to the official server and your own OSM account.

File tickets on GitHub for anything amiss, or ask us (jfire, tmcw, ansis, and samanbb) in the #ideditor room on We’d love to know what’s confusing about iD and how we can improve it.

On to alpha2

This is just the beginning: some of the most interesting functionality in iD is still to come. Our big goals for an alpha2 release will be presets support, translations, and operations for more advanced editing actions and tools.

Devlogging work on the OpenStreetMap project by the MapBox team.

Much of this work is currently focused on improvements to OpenStreetMap funded by the Knight Foundation

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